Retail in Asia


Online to offline: Mode Sportif opens in Paddington

Retail in Asia Mode Sportif Model Activewear

After running her business for two years purely online, young entrepreneur and socialite Deborah Symond has opened her first physical store in Paddington last Thursday.

Symond has been making inroads in the women’s fashion industry selling designer labels and activewear for the modern off-duty woman. Aged 28, she is the daughter of Aussie Home Loans executive chairman John Symond, who has provided her with mentorship and support.

“We have brands like Kenzo, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Iro, and we style those back with more active collaborations from luxurious activewear labels like Monreal London, Lucas Hugh and Adidas by Stella McCartney,” she said.

Deborah Symond at the launch of her Paddington store.
Deborah Symond at the launch of her Paddington store.

“It was really important to me to start online to make sure we had a really strong international presence,” she said. Mode Sportif’s largest market is Sydney, followed by New York, Hong Kong and Japan.

Ms Symond said in store customers were driven by wanting something they could touch or feel, whereas online customers were drawn to clothing items which are visual and brightly coloured.

Her move into bricks and mortar follows some research released yesterday by the Commonwealth Bank, which showed that nearly one in five pure play online retailers are intending to open a physical store within the next 12 months.

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(Source: Daily Telegraph)